The man who has a chance to win the 2024 presidential election has not been shy about telling the world his plans. Donald Trump is going to turn the United States into a fascist nation, full stop.
From time to time, I encounter people who are STILL not getting how dangerous Trump is. When I am in a good mood, I write this off as just their being a good person who can’t accept “it can happen here” and wants to think the best of everyone. When I am not in a good mood, I want to shake some sense into them by sticking them into one of those things that shake off the loose needles at the Christmas tree farm.
A charitable part of me just figures that they are a victim of our media, and are not paying that close attention so they get a sense of what is happening by glancing at headlines. These headlines often do an absolutely awful job of framing a story.
For example, Donald Trump gave what is perhaps the most disturbing speech of his life, saying something for a man for whom giving disturbing speeches is part of his brand. He echoed past authoritarian fascist strongmen by describing liberals as “vermin” who are a threat “far less sinister, dangerous, and grave than the threat from within.” This was said at a Veterans Day event that was supposedly held to honor Americans who served.
At first this got minimal coverage, and headlines like this…first is the New York Times, and the second is CNN:
Here is CNN’s:
I am with Tom Nichols here.
Holy shit, how did anyone listen to that authoritarian rant and decide that this was the takeaway pic.twitter.com/lgcXnlzn9G
— Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) November 12, 2023
I do take a little comfort that Mags Haberman, who often seems to be a Professional Trump Downplayer, is talking about some incredibly unnerving stuff on Twitter:
Anyone who makes "ridiculous" assertion Trump is echoing fascists will find their "entire existence crushed" if he's president again, his spokesman says https://t.co/hLTrqa3vUN
— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) November 13, 2023
And please, no more “Trump is all talk” wishful thinking. Take what the man says seriously, especially when it is this stuff.
The institutional right is screening a “pro-Trump army of up to 54,000 loyalists” that, if elected, Trump plans to use to unleash DOJ on his political enemies, create deportation camps for millions of immigrants, and generally turn his whim into law. https://t.co/QRRyWdufvN
— Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz) November 13, 2023
The article is an excellent outline of what Trump is planning if he wins, but I still do not think that headline, which is what a lot of people only see, captures what he is planning with the right amount of urgency. And in late-breaking news, a Trump campaign spokeperson said this to The Washington Post in reference to people daring to state what happened over the weekend, that Trump is increasingly using Third Reich-type rhetoric:
“Those who try to make that ridiculous assertion are clearly snowflakes grasping for anything because they are suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome and their entire existence will be crushed when President Trump returns to the White House.”
Well, that’s not insane and terrifying. Not at all! By the way, better late than never for ol’ WaPo. That article did do a pretty good job of laying out what Trump is planning, and how he is telling us what he is planning.
We need more of that from our media. We really need Americans to understand what a Trump presidency will look like so they can ask themselves, is this truly what I want?
The last word goes to Mary Chapin-Carpenter with a song that fits on a few levels.